Latest figures show a sharp drop in number of people out of work in Merton

Latest figures show a sharp drop in number of people out of work in Merton

Latest figures show a sharp drop in number of people out of work in Merton

First published in News This Is Local London: Photograph of the Author by , Chief Reporter

There has been a sharp drop in the number of people out of work in Merton this year according to new figures released last week.

The number of adults claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance in the borough has fallen in the last few months, with 25.1 per cent less people claiming the benefit in June this year compared to the same time last year.

The drop is even higher among young people - aged 18 to 24-years-old - with 27 per cent fewer claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance over that period according to figures from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) databases by the Office for National Statistics.

The DWP said it is great news but there is a lot more work to do.

Matthew Hitchin the DWP district operations manager for south London said: "We will continue to do what we are doing to lower the numbers claiming Jobseeker’s, plus we have some massive developments coming up.

"We have 85 vacancies for Crossrail, more for Westfield in Croydon and the Nine Elms project in Battersea.

"With all these opportunities coming up it will help us get more people into work."

Speaking about how the DWP reduce the number of young people claiming the benefit, Mr Hitchin said there are a range of schemes including a work experience scheme.

Although it is unpaid, 60 per cent of people who take part get into work as a result.

Of the 40 per cent who do not, he said: "It is really positive that 60 per cent are going through it and into work.

"As figures show, youth unemployment is coming down."

In Merton, there were 685 young people aged 18 to 24 years out of work in June 2013, which reduced to 500 in June this year. Those aged 18 and over are categorised separately, with 3,583 people out of work in June last year, compared to 2,682 in June this year.

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